Barclays Bank Zambia, mobile operator MTN and technology Company JUMO, have announced the launch of a forthcoming new mobile savings product and the expansion of an existing lending facility aimed at growing financial inclusion and bringing banking services to the unbanked.
MTN’s digital lending product, Kongola was launched in February 2016 and leverages a robust financial technology platform built and maintained by JUMO. Since the product’s initial launch, over 850 000 unique customers have been served and more than 5 million loans have been disbursed.
To drive the next phase of growth for Kongola, JUMO has partnered with Barclays Bank Zambia to continue providing the technology that connects eligible MTN MoMo customers to loans funded by Barclays. These loans are short term – 7, 14 or 21 days – and customers are able to access various amounts, depending on their credit risk score, Mobile wallet activity and repayment behaviour.
Speaking at the launch, MTN Zambia’s Chief Executive Officer, Charles Molapisi noted that partnerships between banks and mobile money operators are fundamental in the mobile money ecosystem, hence his organisation’s partnership with Barclays Zambia.
“We currently serve more than 1.1 million mobile money customers, making MTN MoMo the largest mobile money platform in the country. We consider taking financial services to the unbanked a huge responsibility that demands constant innovation and this forms the basis for our partnership with Barclays Zambia. MTN is moving Zambia into the digital economy and Barclays has long been our partner and we are excited to be taking this partnership to the next level as this will spearhead innovative initiatives which will deepen financial access in the nation.”
Barclays Bank Zambia Managing Director, Mizinga Melu said: “The changing landscape of digital banking and mobile telephony is creating unique opportunities in the way and manner customers are served. Zambia will need to digitise financial services to rapidly scale up client acquisition and patronage. We have invested approximately K43 million over the last three years in technologies that speak into this need and our partnership with MTN and JUMO further demonstrates the big steps we are taking to support this agenda”.
She added that “Barclays digital strategy has long been committed to ensuring transaction convenience for the market. We have made great strides in our mission to ensure financial inclusion and today’s agreement with MTN and JUMO will greatly accelerate the easy availability of banking services to the unbanked”.
JUMO’s Director of Strategic Partnerships in Africa, James Townsend-Rose noted that JUMO partners with forward-thinking banks and mobile network operators such as Barclays and MTN to deliver digital financial services to customers in emerging markets. The technology company’s highly agile and scalable Platform operates inclusive financial services marketplaces and can adapt quickly to customer needs – connecting them to a range of progressive financial choices.
“We believe that innovative and ambitious partnerships are key to driving far-reaching financial inclusion and development. JUMO’s partnership with Barclays Bank and MTN Zambia is a reflection of JUMO’s mission to connect millions of people to the best possible financial choices,” says James Townsend-Rose, JUMO’s Director of Strategic Partnerships in Africa.